The Food Doctor - Healing Foods for Mind and Body Food Additives, Nutrients, and Supplements A to Z

E123 is a food additive approved by the European Union (EU). It is used as a synthetic colouring agent in food and drink products, as well as in photography.

The common name for E123 is ameranth.

E123 gives products a red / purple colouration and is highly soluble in water - making it useful as a dye in photography. E123 is often used in wines and spirits.

E123 is associated with asthma and eczema, as well as hyperactivity in children. There have also been some queries about the possibility of E123 being carcinogenic. Individuals with intolerance to salicylates may find that they are intolerant to E123, due to the colouring being an azo dye.

E123 is banned in many countries including the United States, Austria, Russia, and Norway.

Examples of food and drink products that sometimes include E123:

  • cake mixes
  • jelly crystals
  • tinned fruit
  • gravy granules
  • soups
  • desserts
  • wines
  • spirits

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